“Does the life of our Jesus animate
us? Do we indeed give Him the
true service of the heart without
which whatever else we give has
no value?”

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton


“Curiosity, too which keeps us
engaged in what is going on,
brings home many a foolish
companion for our thoughts
to break the silence and peace
our Lord desires to find in us.” 

St. Elizabeth Seton

S. Marie Agnese Bonanno

“We visited every home in the Holy Name [Cleveland, Ohio] parish boundaries regardless of religious affiliation,” S. Marie Agnese recalled of her initiation into social work in 1933. Ten years later she was one of the pioneers in the Cincinnati Catholic Charities’ School Social Service Program, followed by terms of service at Santa Maria Institute and St. Joseph Infant Home. She came by her efforts in social work naturally. As a youngster she and her siblings often visited the elderly in their Lima, Ohio, neighborhood, bringing them fruit from her father’s store.

This woman, whose eyes often sparkled with humor, warmly reached out with her big heart and her wide vision to children with special needs, to poor families, and to unwed mothers and their babies. No one was beyond her interest and concern.

Hospitals served as the next venue for Sister’s ministry. She established a medical social service department at Good Samaritan Hospital, Dayton, Ohio, in the 1960s and the following decade served at Penrose Hospital in Colorado Springs, Colo. Her unbounded energy and infectious charm drew many into her warm embrace

Join Our Mission